ERAMET takes its responsibilities toward society and its neighbouring communities seriously. The Group is committed to making an active contribution to the economic and social development of the regions of the world and its host countries. This means, for example, commitments on jobs, building infrastructure, setting up industrial ecology processes and local sponsorship actions.
Recruiting a majority of nationals
For all its operating sites, ERAMET recruits the vast majority of its employees locally.
Thus, in Gabon, 98.5% of the staff of COMILOG and SETRAG are Gabonese. In New Caledonia, Société Le Nickel (SLN), 97% of whose staff are locally born, is the country's largest employer. Back in 1969, it became the first company in New Caledonia to establish trade union representation and a health-care plan, and subsequently led the way, in 1989, in granting its employees social benefits such as profit-sharing and save-as-you-earn initiatives.
Participating in community life and the development of local initiatives
In the case of all its operating sites, the ERAMET group is actively committed to serving local communities. It contributes to each region’s development issues, helps to improve living conditions and regularly takes part in cultural, sporting and other initiatives. Its contribution to local life takes many forms, as the examples below show.
Fostering local economic development
In Argentina, the Lithium project team helps local communities to develop their capability to grow quinoa, an endemic plant to the Andes plateaus with high nutritional value. The aim of the initiative is to propose a source of revenue or an alternative income, but also to improve the living conditions and diet of populations in the project’s host area.
Building or restoring local infrastructure
In New Caledonia, SLN contributed around €209,500 to the renovation of the road from Doniambo to Nouméa Port in 2015. The goal is to provide for truck traffic on a separate lane to private vehicles.
In Gabon, the Group’s subsidiaries took part in infrastructure developments in 2014. COMILOG also supported Franceville’s penitentiary authorities in the construction of two classrooms for incarcerated minors and took part in the restoration of three schools in Moanda, while SETRAG maintains dispensaries and housing for the seven main stations on the Transgabonais railway. In addition, SODEPAL renovated the Makoumba municipal kindergarten.
Setting up an industrial ecology process
ERAMET applies the principles of industrial ecology, an environmental and social management method that, instead of reasoning in terms of reducing pollution at the end of the chain, seeks to reduce material and energy flows by designing industrial ecosystems where these flows are circular whenever possible. For example they may be:
- reused internally, like recycling water, a current practice that can concern up to 95% of the water used at the New Guilin, China unit;
- exchanged with other companies: the ERAMET Sandouville site in France uses steam from a neighbouring industrial & chemical incineration site in its process;
- used by neighbouring communities: ERAMET Norway Sauda and Kvinesdal share their excess steam to heat the local sports ground to prevent the soil freezing in winter.
Supporting education and training
ERAMET also actively supports education and training for local populations locales, particularly young people. This involves sponsoring classes, taking part in cooperation programmes with local educational structures (creating workshops, hosting teachers) or taking in interns on its industrial and mining sites. En 2014, approximately 1,000 students or apprentices were hosted on the Group’s various sites.
In Indonesia, the Weda Bay Nickel project’s Saloi Foundation is particularly active in education. For example, it funded equipment and training for primary and secondary teachers and supported universities by organising international educational workshops.
In Sweden, Erasteel Kloster’s units encourage training for their employees. Seven operators were able to obtain funding for three-year training programmes leading to environmental or engineering qualifications.
Aubert & Duval: a foundation that supports local life and develops people
Discover the projects supported by the Aubert & Duval foundation at www.fondationaubertduval.org
Promoting transparency principles
TI: transparency principles applied in Group’s host countries
ERAMET has been a supporter of EITI (Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative) since 2011. Based on a set of principles and rules, as well as a coalition of governments, companies, civil society groups, investors and international organisations, EITI promotes transparency on local revenues. In signing up to these principles, ERAMET shows its intention to beneficiate natural resources responsibly and be transparent on money transfers between businesses and host countries, but also to report regularly to its stakeholders.
ERAMET takes part in EITI’s implementation in Indonesia, where the Group is developing a mining project, Weda Bay Nickel. A member of the committee for the creation of an EITI secretariat in Indonesia is on the project’s Supervisory Board.
ERAMET is also represented on the EITI Senegal interest group for Senegal via an employee of Mineral Deposit Limited, ERAMET’s partner in TiZir, a joint venture to mine mineral sands north of Dakar. Preparatory work for EITI Senegal’s first report on 2012 and 2013 is in progress.
Moreover, ERAMET’s EITI correspondent takes part in a workgroup run by the French Foreign Ministry set up to provide input for the French representative on the international board of the EITI.
Finally, the ERAMET group closely monitors developments and the implementation of France’s membership of EITI, which was announced by the French President at the G8 Summit in Moscow in June 2013.